Untold Legends: Dark Kingdom: Right and Wrong
I’ve been playing Untold Legends: Dark Kingdom a lot with a friend of mine (Steve), and I’ve been enjoying it quite a bit. Steve and I have played through Baldur’s Gate I, most of Baldur’s Gate II (still working on it), and the two Champions of Norrath games several times each. Can you tell we’re big action RPG fans? (I just ordered the PS2 game Bard’s Tale as well. Unfortunately it’s only one player, but I like this type of game a lot, so…)
I’m not saying that Untold Legends doesn’t have problems, because it does. But I think the pluses outweigh the minuses, so I thought I’d list them here to help you make a decision if you’re an RPG fan.
- Characters Get Stuck
Our characters get stuck on the level geometry quite a bit, and it’s really annoying to always be tweeking your character around to get by obstacles that should be easy to navigate.
- Multiplayer Gaming Untested
It looks like SOE did very little local multiplayer testing. Why do I say that? We can’t even load a two player game without starting a two player campaign from scratch first! That’s right. If we enter the game and load up the last game we played, it won’t work. We have to start a new two player game from scratch, wait through the cinematics and opening dialog, and then load our game. At least we only need to do this once per evening, but it’s very annoying. Update: As Jason suggested, hitting X works. Though I’m sure we tried that before. Ah well. But still, X is not the standard for this situation – START is. This is an inconsitency that has caused me much grief!
- Uninspired Level Design
We recently left the caves and boy was I glad! They were boring! Other parts of the game so far have been better, however. The graphics for the level geometry are rather bland as well. Some parts look better than others, but the caves look especially bad.
- No Health/Mana Potions
We’ve come to expect health potions to come along and save the day when playing games like this, and now we’re stuck in a game where health only comes from killing monsters. Somewhat of a downer.
- Great Special FX
Spells in combat have some great special effects, and the eye candy is fun to watch. I haven’t tired of it yet.
- Great Character Modelling
So far we haven’t met a huge variety of bad guys, but what we have seen is well done. Our main characters are also well modelled and look great. It looks like SOE spent a lot of time getting the characters right.
- Combat is Fun
This is where the game really shines. Game like Champions of Norrath give you a single ranged attack, a single melee attack, and spells. But Untold Legends has a combo system so that you can perform all sorts of fun attacks. As well, I always play a non-wizard character while Steve always plays a wizard. He usually gets some cool spells and I usually get stuck with boring ones. But in Untold Legends I’m getting some pretty fun spells to use in combat, and they’re great. For example, I recently gained the ability to teleport over to an enemy, slash him up a bit, and then teleport back. It’s been handy and fun at the same time! This feature – the fun combat – is basically what makes the game for me. If combat wasn’t so good, I wouldn’t be playing this game.
So there you have it. It’s a game with many flaws, but the combat makes up for it. At least that’s the way I see it. I hope that Steve drops by and adds his comments too!